the department

The Department of Transformation is a collection of collaborators, friends, acquaintances and strangers who gather together intermittently in the name of creative production. There are visual, video and performing artists, stage techs, designers of clothing and pixels, musicians and more among us. We are all culture creators, artists, organizers and audience members at different turns.

If you’re inspired, incensed, or just want more information, please contact us: dot@departmentoftransformation.org

We’re delighted to partner with the MIX Experimental Queer Film Festival as a fiscal sponsor and a creative collaborator.

Avory Agony | Ariel “Speedwagon” Federow | Blaise | Buzz Slutsky | Cristy Road | Damien Luxe | Daniel Lang-Levistsky | Heather Ács | Justin Sayre | Lizxnn Disaster | Princess Tiny & the Meats | Quito Ziegler | Roo Khan | Sarah Jenny Bleviss | Zachary Wager Scholl


Avory Agony Mr. Agony is a queer community stylist and builder of the big city.  A native New Yorker and teller of realness, they have been producing decadent art and events for the past eight years.  In 2009 they co-founded Hey Queen! a monthly queer dance party that creates space for queers of various backgrounds and genders to celebrate while raising money for local social justice organizations.

Ariel Federow Ariel “Speedwagon” Federow
is a performing artist whose work has been shown at the Bowery Poetry Club, Dixon Place, the NYU Hemispheric Institute, Collect Pond, the Montreal Fringe Festival (Spirit of the Fringe Award, 2008), On the Boards (Seattle, WA), Homo-a-Gogo, and all around the nightclubs and lofts of New York City. Notable projects include curating a re-performance of Marina Abramovic’s work at 25CPW and producing an annual giant, multi-disciplinary Jewish theater extravaganza with the Aftselokhis Ladies’ Auxiliary. Originally a modern dancer, forever a clown, her inherently interdisciplinary work fuses dance, slapstick, circus, drag, and a little good old fashioned razzle-dazzle.

Blaise
is a scientist with artistic vices. His work aims to appropriate the tools of social control & conditioning to create utilitarian spaces of liberation. He’s studied at Barnard College, Goldsmiths College (UK), and the Fashion Institute of Technology, NYC. This collection of living statues showcases his haute couture for the glittery gutter masses. In addition to making gorgeous costumes, he also has a particular fondness for creating collaborative, all-encompassing event environments.
Concurrent instillation work can be seen with The Old Queen and the Sea, an original piece by Kyle Kupres opening Thursday, 21 July at Splatterpool Artspace, Brooklyn.
Recent work has been seen with MIX ’10 (sculpture work The Queer Fruit Tree I, and performance I Will Share My Blood with You); costuming for Antigone, presented by Theater Transgression; Queer Fruit Tree II, Into the Neon at Chashama: Chelsea; Queer Fruit Tree III, Radiance, Madame Gallery, MN; and sick looks at the best house parties you’ve ever been to. Upcoming work coming soon to a little storefront church of queer near you.He’d like to take this moment to remind you: you’re only as free as you let yourself be.

Buzz Slutsky
is a Brooklyn-based artist, activist, and curator who works in drawing, video, sculpture, and other media. Buzz’s artwork tends to focus on social interaction, surveillance, gender/power, and queer diasporas. A graduate of Sarah Lawrence College, Buzz is currently Assistant Curator for the Pop-Up Museum of Queer History, and has played support roles in the New York art world by interning at the New Museum, Art in General, Visual AIDS, and Electronic Arts Intermix. In 2008, Buzz was a Grace Paley Organizing Fellow at Jews for Racial and Economic Justice (JFREJ), and in April of 2011, Buzz was boo-ed by more than 500 people while playing Haman (the Purim villain) at the JFREJ Purimshpiel Extravaganza. Buzz occasionally stars as a maker of strange sounds for historical reenactments with performance collective Babyskinglove.

Cristy RoadCristy C. Road is a 28 year old Cuban-American Artist and Writer. Blending the inevitable existence of social principles, sexual curiosity, mental inadequacies, and dirty thoughts- Road thrives to testify the beauty of the imperfect. Her endeavors in illustrating and publishing began when writing a punk rock zine, Greenzine, for ten years. She resumed to illustrate countless record album covers, book covers, political organizations, magazine articles, and more. Road has also published an illustrated novel entitled INDESTRUCTIBLE [Microcosm Publishing], a memoir on being queer, Latina, and punk rock during adolescence; DISTANCE MAKES THE HEART GROW SICK, a postcard collection of work from 2001-2007 [Microcosm Publishing]; and BAD HABITS [Soft Skull], an Illustrated love story about a faltering human heart’s telepathic connections to the destruction of New York City. Roads work has also been featured in the Baby Remember My Name: New Queer Girl Writing Anthology, Live Through This Anthology, Reproduce and Revolt, and countless other published works. Road just concluded a National tour with SISTER SPIT, an all-girl spoken-word road-show and is currently working on SPIT AND PASSION, a new graphic novel about coming out, religion, culture, and chronic band obsessions. She hibernates in Brooklyn, NY.

Damien Luxe
is a Brooklyn-based artist and organizer. She is a repatriated expat by way of Toronto, DIY tech geek, and working-class gone hustling-class queer femme fatale media maker. She loves anything on wheels and rhinestones.Damien has worked in independent print, web, theater and audio production for 10 years, and is committed to creating fabulous and accessible representations of the diverse communities she embodies and allies with, and to skill-sharing low/no-cost production techniques with others.D’Luxe as an artist has been curated & performed all over North America, and most recently has produced the Hot Pink Mass and Femmes Fight Back installation and the the Heels on Wheels Glitter Roadshow.Her art website is axondluxe.com; her design portfolio is heelsonwheelsdesign.com, and her blog is femmetech.org.

Daniel Lang/Levitsky
is a puppeteer, designer and aspiring rabble-rouser based in New York City.  Can’t stop picking things up on the street and making other things out of them – outfits, collectives, cabarets, barricades, meals…  Never figured out how to make art for art’s sake; rarely wants to work alone.  Just another oysterlisher gendertreyf apikoyrus mischling fem who gets off on long strings of identity terms, especially af yidish.Began performing with objects and movement in the mid-1990s at the Bread & Puppet Theater and (with the mentorship of Great Small Works, Circus Amok, and others) hasn’t been able to stop since.  Treasured recent collaborators have included Jenny Romaine, Killer Sideburns, J Dellecave, Niknaz Tavakolian, Dorian Wood, Leah Harmon, Patty Farrell, Abigail Levine, Abigail Miller, and Nina Calloway.Current projects include street performances of The Murder of DeFarra ‘Dean’ Gaymon as Told to His Killer’s Boss; work with the Aftselokhis Ladies Auxiliary Spectacle Committee; a Brooklyn Living Rooms tour of do not spare; inventing Foretopman, or, HMS Handsome Pinafore, or, The Buggers’ Opera, or, The Last that Loved a Sailor, or, Hardly Ever; and dancing with the Rude Mechanical Orchestra’s Tactical Spectacle.For this one, thanks to: the glitters (once and future and l.aux), le petit versailles’ founders and gardeners (and the rest of the LES survivors!), the queens of greater homo holler, and the whole queer squatter summerstock gang.  dos gezunt iz in dir  /  la salute è in voi.

Heather Ács
is a Brooklyn-based, multi-media theatre performance artist, activist, educator and high-femme troublemaker. Her gritty, glittery work has been featured in festivals, theatres, and galleries across the U.S., Canada, and Europe. She performs and facilitates workshops at community spaces, colleges and conferences from coast to coast. Heather has worked with Justin Bond, Claude Michelle-Wampler, J. Ed Araiza of the SITI Company, and filmmaker, Steven Soderbergh. She is the Co-Producer of the Heels on Wheels Glitter Roadshow, a touring, performance-art cabaret of flashy, queer femme performers. She is also a dedicated teaching artist, using theatre as a tool for social change with low-income youth.

Justin Sayre
is the writer and creator of the downtown hit, The Meeting* The show has been called “a delightfully droll cult hit” by Time Out New York, “riotously funny and campy” by Next Magazine and “hilarious and fearless” at Sirius XM Radio. The Meeting* recently completed its season with a benefit for the Ali Forney Center, Night of A Thousand Judy’s at Joe’s Pub.As an actor, he has worked and studied with some of the finest professionals in New York. As a gay, Justin has excelled at scarf placement, devilish quips, and a healthy but firm love of the American musical. He has  performed at Comix, Symphony Space, Carnegie Hall and as part of Joe’s Pub’s popular monthly series “Our Hit Parade.” Recently, he was seen at the Leslie/Lohman Gallery for their Tennessee Williams 100th Birthday Celebration, curated by illustrator Robert W. Richards. Justin contributed a story about Justin Bond for Radical Faerie Digest – one of the oldest gay publications in the country – and is currently developing The Accused May Be Seated, his new play about Marie Antoinette. Visit www.themeetingshow.com

Lizxnn Disaster
is a vagabond, currently back home in New York City.  Unable to commit to a single calling, she has had lasting affairs with theater, punk rock, and the visual arts, mainly preferring those endeavors in which her hands end up dirty and her mind exhausted.  She can be found riding her bike, doing yoga, and drinking way too much coffee for her own good.  Please contact her if you have a lead on a cheap Vandercook letterpress or an Airstream Trailer.

Princess Tiny and the Meats
is a musical project started to express the “Death of Gender”.  PTM introduces a new age in music by redefining what it means to be an artist in a society where commercial productivity has killed art.  Written shortly after their debut release “WILL S UR D 4 COIN”,  “CONFESSIONS OF A LOVE SICK TEENAGER”, is the second piece in a series about their experience in transitioning. This gothic fairy tale of unrequited love explores the hardship in holding on to love thru the darkest times in ones life.Set to confuse boundary and gender lines, the New York press has lauded them as a live show that being trans is all about removing gender lines. Partially political and partially emotinal this bands passion is needed at a time for people to access their emotions and survive in a world that has forgotten how to feel.

Quito Ziegler
is an independent producer, photographer, faeriebird and dreamer.  Q shoots in the dark and leaves a trail of glitter behind them.  In addition to producing Fame and Shame on the Lower East Side, they are currently at work on their first film, The Dream of Wild Ponies Dancing.  Quito received her MFA from the International Center of Photography in 2008, where she now serves as faculty.  Recent projects include curating and producing the visual arts exhibition Into the Neon at chashama: Chelsea and a queer/trans reperformance event of Marina Abramovic’s work, The Artist is Absent, at 25CPW.  For three years she produced the documentary photography exhibitions Moving Walls 16, 17, and 18 for the Open Society Foundations, and traveled the world in support of photographers investigating human rights issues. They recently completed an epic cross-country art-making journey in an unmarked white van called the Trojan Pony.Quito is committed to the idea that big dreams really can come true, if you can articulate, delegate, evaluate and budget.  Their photography and ramblings can be charted here:  http://quitoziegler.wordpress.com/

Roo Khan 
wants to do theater with queers that does what El Teatro Campesino did with farmworkers. Roo is a little bit magic, always prepared, a geek about everything they do, and bigger on the inside. They were recently Ismene in Theater Transgression’s production of Antigone, and stage manager for Between Two Worlds: Who Loved You Before You Were Mine. They fix computers for the movement as part of Palante Technology worker cooperative, and organize for gender self-determination as part of the Sylvia Rivera Law Project collective. Almost always online everywhere as MxRoo.

Sarah Jenny Bleviss
http://www.sarahjenny.orgSarah Jenny is a community organizer, new media producer, and artist. She has served as a community organizer and co-founder of SWOP-NYC since 2007. SWOP-NYC is part of a national grassroots network dedicated to improving the lives of current and former sex workers on and off of the job. She is also a member of the Center for Sex Work Research and Policy, the PROS Network, and the Global Network of Sex Worker Projects. She has formerly served on the board of the Desiree Alliance Conference and as the new media director of $pread Magazine. Sarah Jenny is deeply invested in sex workers’ rights activism and AIDS activism from a human rights-based and harm reduction approach. In recent years, she has explored performance art and burlesque under the nom de plume Cybil Libertease and performs throughout New York City. Ms. Bleviss also co-produces a queer performance/dance monthly dance night called Hey Queen! in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.Sarah Jenny earned a B.A. from Hampshire College in visual art and cultural studies in 2005 and and a M.P.S. in Interactive Telecommunications Program at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts in 2011 where she investigated the ways technology can be used to reduce HIV transmission and to improve the lives of those living with HIV/AIDS. In her free time she enjoys social justice projects, pre-war architecture, reading non-fiction and doting on her cats (she has two).

Zachary Wager Scholl
is a writer, performer, dancer, mover and shaker, gogo boy of the movement, and a flagrant faggot of the diasporic, yiddishe variety. Community college educated and from a mixed-class background, he writes and makes art around queer bodies, desire and narratives. Zachary was most recently the writer, director and performer in his debut solo performance, Tearoom Sympathy, a multi-media performance about restroom cruising in grand central station, which premiered at the LaGuardia Performing Arts Center. He is a dancer and spectacle creator with the rude mechanical orchestra dance team. He is an aquarius.